Projects

More than 50 projects were submitted to the Campus of the Future competition by U-M students from a wide variety of majors and backgrounds. Just how is Michigan being reimagined for the 21st century? Each and every entry is different and brings a unique perspective to the discussion.

Explore the full list of project descriptions below by category and come engage with featured entries at the project showcase on October 26, 2017.

  • 1Cademy

    The top-down delivery of knowledge, from instructor to student, is a classic form of teaching. But it doesn’t work for every learner, especially when it comes to understanding difficult concepts. To address this problem, an instructor-guided, collaborative learning technology is being developed. It will encourage the generation of multiple explanations of each concept—by students and for students. ​Both groups will benefit from the experience: a true peer-to-peer process. This learning technology fits into the campus scale. A demonstration application will be built during Fall 2017, with a goal of testing the system in three large undergraduate courses at U-M in Winter 2018.

  • C2D Hub

    The C2D Hub project is dedicated to developing a private dental clinic model that is ecologically sustainable, can be built in any environment and serves as a multi-purpose learning space for its community. This team is currently conducting interviews with faculty, staff and students of the U-M School of Dentistry, practicing dentists and members of the community to determine the must-have elements of the model. After a visit to the Earthship community in Taos, NM, this project will confer with the architecture firm SmithGroup JJR to help shape the clinic’s blueprints. Deliverables will also include a syllabus for a mini course on sustainable dental buildings and practices and a toolkit for developing the clinic of the future, to be distributed to incoming dentistry students at orientation.

  • Developing a MOOC through Engaged Learning: Students Creating for Students

    An interdisciplinary group of upper-division undergraduate, master’s and PhD students from five different schools recently worked under the guidance of Dr. Michaela Zint, and in collaboration with the Office of Academic Innovation and the Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, to develop the first iteration of a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) designed to help national and international learners engage in individual, community and political behaviors to “Act on Climate.” This project is considered to be one of the first original MOOCs developed collaboratively between a professor and students, and can now be used as a model of student-led digital curriculum development for others at U-M and academic institutions around the world.

  • GradeCraft

    Deep learning requires students to be actively engaged with the content, to pursue the connections between what they’re learning and what they already know and to take ownership for their progress. These states of mind do not come about casually, and all too often have been ignored by an educational system built on lectures and high-stakes assessments. The solution is an application called GradeCraft that aims to actively involve students in their education. At the room level that means no more “perfect” grades; students all begin at zero and earn up as they gain mastery. On the building level, GradeCraft can be used to help students flesh out their experiences. We can also reach the total campus by designing an interactive visualization to describe students’ engagement and performance.

  • Honors Leadership Capstone

    In partnership with the Honors Program, Central Student Government proposes the creation of an Honors Leadership Capstone which would serve students interested in purposefully connecting knowledge learned in the classroom with skills learned outside of it. Capstones could be defined as an experiment, project, research study or entrepreneurial venture, with a completion date of 1.5 to 2 years. Successful students would graduate with honors, and be able to display or present their capstone results for others to see. In Fall 2017, the Honors Program, in cooperation with CSG, will pilot this program for a small group of students. The HLC goes beyond the framework of rooms and buildings to impact any student enrolled in the College of LSA and, later, any student across campus.

    Categories: Curriculum Pedagogy

  • Instagram for the Extended Classroom Curriculum

    Teaching is communication: sharing knowledge with the hope of generating a response. As our forms of communication change with the development of new social media, shouldn’t our teaching change, too? A class Instagram project was created as a response to this dilemma, encouraging students to take their class with them as they go about their day and to share some of their world with them by tying it back to the themes of the class. This created a virtual community for students to engage in, learning to learn through their most intuitive forms of engagement. By teaching through technology rather than against it, this project hopes to help students become more thoughtful, engaged and critical media producers and consumers.

  • Maestro: The Conductor’s Baton

    The goal of this project is to develop a virtual conducting system that would allow for the refinement of kinesthetic skills that are essential to creating subtle gestures improving conductor performance and confidence on the podium. This project will support the learning of kinesthetic conducting skills while furthering development of essential musical and cognitive skills.

  • Match.Meet.Master

    Traditionally, an education at U-M has focused on the model of a teacher transferring professional knowledge to students. But what about students seeking to learn something for personal enrichment? For that audience, this project proposes a different delivery method: a website called Match.Meet.Master. M3 will be a student-to-student enterprise executed on a campus-wide scale. Students with a skill to share will create a teaching profile on M3: describing lessons they would offer, pricing and meeting times and locations. Learners will be able to easily “shop” the site for desired lessons. M3 will foster relationships between campus members who rarely interact with each other—for instance, a dental student connecting with a dance student for ballet lessons—while making the most of the abundant talent within the student community.

  • Michigan Foreign Policy Council

    How can students across all majors with an interest in foreign policy gain research experience and develop professional skills in the field? This project’s answer was to create the Michigan Foreign Policy Council, an undergraduate think tank. Members are sorted into teams based on policy interests and work together throughout the semester to form a research question. They then produce a thorough social science research paper to address this question. Team papers are published in a student-produced research journal, available at twice yearly conferences. The conferences also enable members to showcase and present their findings in a public forum. council challenges the traditional method of learning—-in a professor-to-students structure—and allows students to gain research experience outside of the classroom.

    Categories: Pedagogy

  • Pop-Up Learning Labs

    The campus of the future must break free of its institutional and geographic barriers to branch out into surrounding communities, create experiential learning options for students, engage individuals with limited access to higher education and provide space for interdisciplinary collaboration to solve local problems. The proposed solution is to create pop-up learning labs. To test this idea, this team proposes to develop a pilot pop-up lab in Ann Arbor with the opportunity to operate at three scales. At the room scale, the lab will take the form of interactive gatherings between town and gown. At the building scale, the lab will function as a live-in learning community. At the campus scale, the lab will serve as an interactive, engaging set of satellite spaces around campus.

  • Reinventing Interdisciplinary Classes and Curricula

    Interdisciplinary, project-based courses are not new. This idea differs from what has come before by bringing together students who do not normally interact and creating an environment of cooperation to tackle contemporary problems. Such courses will be beneficial in helping young students arrive at a choice of major and will enable older students to apply their refined skills in a practical, project-based setting. The final deliverable will be comprised of a written report that details three potential elective courses designed with stakeholder feedback in consideration. The report will specifically lay out the structure of the classes and potential faculty involvement.

    Categories: Curriculum Pedagogy

  • Restructuring LSA

    This group feels that there are currently many challenges in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts application process that it may be limiting U-M students’ educational experience. To address these concerns, this project suggests several changes. The first is to create a required mini-course for all freshman students within LSA to inform them about all majors, programs and schools at Michigan. The second idea is to create certificate programs for all majors, based on the existing success of the Ross School’s Entrepreneurship and Sales tracks. This would give students who weren’t accepted into a desired major the opportunity to gain basic/foundational knowledge. The implementation of these ideas could give students within LSA a more enjoyable and well-rounded liberal arts experience.

    Categories: Curriculum Pedagogy

  • A Satellite Campus on Mars

    The University of Michigan Bioastronautics and Life Support Systems (BLiSS) project team believes that if human civilization is to succeed in space, then the University of Michigan must be a leader in the endeavor. This project will develop a design for a U-M campus on Mars, as it might appear during the university’s tricentennial in 2117. This design would include but not be limited to the engineering of buildings; suggested scientific research to be conducted on the planet; curriculum considerations; and student life, health and recreation ideas. Input from students, faculty, staff and alumni (especially those employed at leading space agencies and organizations) will be used so that the widest possible worldview can be incorporated into the Mars campus design.

    Categories: Pedagogy Physical Space

  • A Sustainable Living Community

    We are regularly told that Americans live an unsustainable lifestyle and that we need to consume, pollute and waste less. But what would a sustainable living situation look like? Our approach leverages U-M’s housing system to teach students the skills needed to live more sustainably—now and in the future. This project proposes that the university pilot a building-scale behavioral intervention for willing students to learn more about how sustainability education can move beyond the classroom and into residential life. The building could track energy, waste reduction, composting, use of public transportation, small-scale gardening and more—all in a social and supportive space. If successful, this project could be scalable to the whole campus, giving U-M an excellent opportunity to showcase its commitment to sustainability.

  • The Team Player Grade

    The campus of the future is about collaboration. But the 21st-century classroom is still focused on measuring individual success. The Team Player Grade is proposed as a campus-wide solution to foster the development of teamwork skills for students and promote collaboration in team environments. A TPG would be given to students each semester in which they work on a team project. The grade would be obtained via peer assessment from the others on the team. The TPG would be a metric for reflection for the individual students, but also useful for educators. If classes or disciplines produce TPGs that stand out in any way, educators would have the opportunity to revisit the goals of their respective curricula.

  • A Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality MOOC

    In its mission statement, U-M pledges “to serve the people of Michigan and the world through preeminence in creating, communicating, preserving and applying knowledge.” Developing a Massive Open Online Course enhanced by virtual reality/augmented reality technology will help the university meet this goal and position itself as a leader of emerging trends in education access and availability. VR/AR technology, in the form of hand-held, phone-based headsets, offers unique opportunities for the graphic representation of research findings, making otherwise dry material seem more engaging and relatable. This content can be enhanced through room-scale, in-class enrichment exercises. The proposal will also shape the future of the university on a campus-wide scale, by expanding its reach far beyond the geographic boundaries of the institution.